Although he fractured an ankle in Week 2 and hasn't played since, lineman Hubert Mays of Memphis (Tenn.) Whitehaven always figured he'd have the opportunity to compete again this season because his squad had playoff potential.
"I knew my teammates would give me another chance to play," Mays said.
He was right.
Whitehaven currently is 8-0 and has earned a spot in the postseason. If all goes as planned, the 6-feet-6, 260-pounder will be healthy in time for the first round of the playoffs.
"The doctor tells me I'm recovering," Mays said. "My leg is going to be stronger than ever. I could play next week, but I'm going to wait until the playoffs. I'm rehabbing every day, three times a day."
On the recruiting front, Mays claims offers from Arkansas State, Central Arkansas, Memphis, Middle Tennessee and Western Kentucky. Memphis and Middle Tennessee are recruiting him the hardest, he said.
Colleges are telling Mays he could play either offensive tackle or defensive end.
"I'm more aggressive," he said. "I kind of like defense, but I'd be willing to play either one."
Right now, no teams stand out.
"I don't have anybody in front," Mays said. "I'm really trying to see who is going to back off because of my injury. I want to see who has faith in me. From there, I can see where my home is going to be."
According to Mays, Southern Miss and Vanderbilt also are showing interest.
"I here from different schools every day," he said. "With Vanderbilt, more than likely I'll have an offer from them soon. I talk to their coaches and they seem to really like me. I'm going to start hearing from them a lot."
Mays has not set up any officials yet. He has yet to take any unofficials either, but is considering trips to Memphis, Middle Tennessee, Tennessee and Vanderbilt, he said.
Mays thinks more interest will come when he returns to the field.
"It's a guarantee," he said. "I just need to go out and play. Nobody plays the game like I do. To me, I'm one of the best tackles in the state."